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What Is Total Productive Maintenance In The Apparel Industry?



Total Productive Maintenance

Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is a widely followed holistic approach that helps businesses achieve maximum and perfect production. It integrates quality systems and production through the perfectly working machines/equipment, trained employees and TPM approach supported processes.

TPM, first used in 1961 by a Japanese company Denso, is focused to improve the core business processes. TPM emphasizes on preventative and proactive maintenance to maximize the operational efficiencies of equipment.

It narrows the gaps between the roles of maintenance and production staff by empowering the concerned operators to maintain their equipment at their own as per set norms. TPM program develops a shared responsibility for the equipment performance that improves employees’ engagement, involvement, commitment, and the feel of ownership.

Eight TPM Pillars:

S.N. Pillar Objectives                        Benefits
1. Autonomous Maintenance Fix the responsibility for routine maintenance like cleaning, lubricating, inspection, etc ·   Gives the operators greater “ownership” of equipment.

·   Increases operators’ knowledge.

·   Ensures equipment is cleaned and lubricated.

·   Identifies issues before the failures.

·   Frees maintenance staff for high-level tasks.

2. Planned Maintenance Schedule maintenance based on the predicted failure rate. ·   Reduces instances of unplanned stop time.

·   Enables the maintenance when equipment is not in use.

·   Reduces the inventory with better control.

3. Quality Maintenance Design error detection; prevention into failures. Apply RCA to eliminate recurring quality defects. ·   Targets quality issues with a focus on removing the root sources of defects.

·   Reduces numbers of defects.

·   Reduces maintenance and production cost.

4. Focused Improvement Establish small groups of employees to work together proactively for regular & incremental improvements. ·   Cross-functional teams identify and resolve recurring problems.

·   Bridges the collective talent for continuous improvement.

5. Early Equipment Management Imply practical knowledge, experience, and understanding for improving the design of required equipment. ·   New equipment delivers the required performance because of fewer start-up issues.

·   Maintenance is simple; users feel easy to use.

6. Training and Education Prepare the concerned employees to achieve TPM goals through CLP. ·   Operators get skills to maintain the equipment and to identify emerging issues.

·   Maintenance staff learns more for proactive & preventative maintenance.

·   Managers are better acquainted with TPM principles.

7. Safety, Health, & Environment Maintain a safe and healthy working environment. ·   Eliminates health and safety risks.

·   Makes workplace accident-free.

8. TPM in Administration Apply TPM techniques for administrative functions. ·   Leverage TPM benefits beyond the work floor by reducing waste in administrative processes.

·   Supports the production quantity because of improved order processing, procurements, and scheduling.


Major Performance Issues in Apparel Industry Pertaining to Improper TPM:

  • The content source the materials like fabrics, accessories, trims, etc. on the time because of the lengthy process; so, the apparel production quantity gets a setback.
  • The production lines are unprofessionally designed as per convenience but these lead the organization to poor productivity.
  • Workers are less focused on task because of regular problems.
  • Workers are not trained to manage a small maintenance problem.
  • Regular breakdowns drop the individuals’ performances.
  • Lack of new equipment harms the quality and quantity both.
  • More defects because of machinery faults lower the production.
  • Machine problems are corrected for a long because of non-availability of TPM.
  • Absence of a database of problems makes the planning of updating the plant complex.
  • Waste of efforts disheartens the hard-working employees.
  • Most garment industries have an incentive-based payment environment; machine/equipment problem harms the financial interests of employees so they start planning to switch over.

To summarize; the percentage of different factors causing a loss in productivity of a garment manufacturing unit are:

  • Annual labor turnover – 24%
  • Absenteeism – 10%
  • Methods effectiveness – 90%
  • Average factory performance – 90%
  • Repairs returned to operatives – 10%
  • Rejects – 2%
  • Machine delay ideal – 1%
  • Machine delay other work – 4%
  • Unmeasured work – 20%
  • Others repair – 2%
  • Waiting time – 1%
  • Balancing losses – 5%

Widen Scope of TPM in Apparel Industry:

The maintenance department is responsible to look after the equipment and machines ensuring their peak performance. The major functions of the maintenance department in an apparel industry include:

  • Regular inspection of sewing machines and other equipment for reliability
  • Periodic maintenance of equipment’s and machines according to the feedback of users and database of action taken in the past and to be taken as per plan
  • Maintaining a continuous power supply
  • Maintaining unabated water supply to compressors & boilers etc
  • Planning, designing and implementing expansion plans
  • Supplying purified water
  • Maintaining the WHO standard PH value for ETP (Effluent Treatment Plant)
  • Buying new machinery as per demand
  • Stocking spare parts and accessories
  • Housekeeping
  • Planning for required constructions and furnishing
  • Maintaining a logbook of actions taken and to be taken
  • Planning to upgrade the existing process for reduced waste

Roadmap for TPM in Apparel Industry:

With increasing competition in readymade garment manufacturing trade because of the regular emergence of new players even from the international market, manufacturers are more conscious to reduce production cost but to improve the quality.

The involvement of a professional ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ specialist simplifies the most critical and common task of reducing the waste of efforts, time, material, resources etc by increasing the equipment reliability and availability.

Fixing the clearly defined responsibility of equipment /machine users for routine maintenance is the first step. Schedule maintenance as per planned maintenance plan, error detection& failure prevention as per quality maintenance plan, creating groups of users for particular maintenance task as per focused improvement plan etc are key roles of TPM consultant.

The TPM consulting company also provides insights for purchasing the best fit new machines/equipment as well as for expansion. The professional review of administrative processes drives the apparel manufacturing unit to accelerate the processes with quick decisions.

 Concluding Note:

Total Productive Maintenance is targeted towards zero breakdowns and zero defects that result in the improved utilization of resources and plant capacity to reduce the production cost with better quality achievement.

The report of ‘Failure Modes Effects & Criticality Analysis (FMECA)’, Focused Improvement (Kobestu Kaizen) and ‘Root Cause Analysis’ created by the hired TPM services provider agency deliver insights to plan for long-term growth targets with available resources.


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